Former Liverpool defender Mark Lawrenson has sent a blunt message to Premier League sides following comparisons between Man City’s Haaland and new Reds forward Darwin Núñez.
Núñez arrived at Anfield for an initial £68m this summer from Benfica, after bagging 26 goals in 28 league matches in the Premeira Liga.
He comes with a huge reputation, but maybe not as much as 21-year-old superstar Haaland who joined Manchester City from Borussia Dortmund this window.
The ex-Match of the Day pundit has briefly wished “good luck” to the rest of the league with Haaland joining Pep Guardiola’s side, but does think Núñez will have an impact.
“Both Erling Haaland and Darwin Núñez are goal scorers but they’re both completely different players,” Lawrenson told Paddy Power.
“It shows that you don’t have to have a stereotypical player in that position. They can be different.”
“As we saw with City last year, they won the league without a striker.”
“And now they’ve got one of the world’s best so good luck to everybody else.”
City have also added Kalvin Phillips and Julian Alvarez to their ranks, while Liverpool have invested in Calvin Ramsay and Fabio Carvalho for their squad this season.
Núñez made his uncompetitive debut for Liverpool in their 4-0 pre-season defeat to Manchester United, missing an open goal in the process which has sparked mass criticism on social media.
As a 23-year-old, Núñez is far from being the finished product and Jürgen Klopp said to the media ahead of Liverpool’s friendly with Crystal Palace in Singapore, it is down to him to help him develop.
“He’s now a boy from us and now we do absolutely everything to not only see the things we saw from him at Benfica; no, from there we go.”
“This is the basis. And again, it is my responsibility to help Darwin that he can fulfil his full potential. And I am in it. I am in that responsibility.”